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PR- 215-10
May 19, 2010


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today announced that Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert C. Lieber will leave City government in June and return to the private sector. Lieber joined the Bloomberg Administration in January 2007, serving first as President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation before being named Deputy Mayor in December 2007.

“Bob came to our Administration with a reputation for getting big things done, and in his time here he certainly has,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “More than a half century after Robert Moses first conceived of a redevelopment of Willets Point, Bob and his team have helped us lay the groundwork to achieve it. At the World Trade Center site, Coney Island, Hunter’s Point South, Governors Island and so many other important City sites, Bob helped set paths for growth that will benefit generations of New Yorkers. At the same time, through the expansion of our job placement services, our small business loan program and our anti-foreclosure efforts, together with new, creative initiatives to spur entrepreneurship, Bob helped us through a time of unprecedented national economic turmoil. He’s made a huge impact, and I wish him the best.”

“Working with Mayor Bloomberg and his terrific team has been the most satisfying experience of my life,” said Deputy Mayor Lieber. “His leadership, vision and willingness to take risks, together with his unwavering support for the people who work for him, create the most stimulating and productive work environment I have ever witnessed. I have cherished this opportunity and will never forget it.”

Deputy Mayor Lieber advanced some of the most significant, large-scale economic development projects in New York City’s history. The Willets Point Development Plan – approved by the City Council in November 2008 – calls for the remediation of what is today a heavily polluted 62-acre site in the heart of Queens. It will create an entirely new neighborhood with 5,500 housing units, eight acres of open space, parks and playgrounds, office and retail space, a new school and a hotel and convention center. The Coney Island Revitalization Plan – approved by the City Council in July 2009 – has already reversed the decades-old trend of disinvestment in one of New York City’s – and the nation’s – most beloved areas. Coney Island’s famed amusement district, which has shrunk to just three acres, will grow to include a 27-acre amusement and entertainment district, and it will create 4,500 new units of housing. Together, the plans for Willets Point and Coney Island alone will create more than 11,000 permanent jobs, 43,000 construction jobs and $39 billion in economic activity in New York City over the next 30 years. The plan for Hunter's Point South – a 30-acre, largely vacant waterfront site in southern Queens – will accommodate 5,000 new units of housing, 60 percent of which will be affordable primarily to moderate- and middle-income families, new parks and a school.

At Mayor Bloomberg’s direction, Deputy Mayor Lieber led New York City’s effort to help unblock the recent stalemate regarding the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site. In March 2010, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Silverstein Properties and the City reached an agreement to allow progress at the site to continue and the National September 11 Memorial & Museum to be completed by the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

Deputy Mayor Lieber led the City’s recent efforts to secure agreements with State and local officials on the long-term development, funding and governance of Governors Island and Brooklyn Bridge Park. New York City now has the primary responsibility to operate and shape the futures of both extraordinary places.

Deputy Mayor Lieber implemented a series of innovative initiatives to help promote job growth and diversify New York City’s economy. To make it easier for entrepreneurs to start and grow companies in New York City, the City has created low-cost incubator office space in several locations, provided targeted business training to New Yorkers looking to start companies or join start-ups, and created a fund to bridge the gap that exists for businesses in between the seed fund and venture capital stages. In 2009, the City launched MediaNYC 2020, a strategy to maintain and enhance New York City’s position as a global media capital. The City also achieved the most significant local tax policy reform in decades, including the elimination of the Unincorporated Business Tax on freelancers and reduction of it for small businesses.

Other major initiatives spearheaded by Deputy Mayor Lieber include:

  • The development of other area-wide revitalization plans, including the South Bronx Initiative, Harlem-125th Street, the Sunset Park Waterfront Vision Plan and the redevelopment plan for the Staten Island Homeport, with City Planning Director Amanda M. Burden, New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky and others.
  • The implementation of the nation’s largest affordable housing plan, which recently surpassed the 100,000-unit milestone, and the creation of one of the nation’s strongest anti-foreclosure efforts, with Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Rafael E. Cestero.
  • The expansion of job placement services and achievement of record-high job placements, with Small Business Services Commissioner Robert W. Walsh.
  • The extrication of the City from the fatally flawed New York City Off Track Betting (OTB) arrangement, ultimately saving the City tens of millions of dollars.
  • The expansion of the City’s tourism goals and success helping it become the most visited U.S. city for the first time in 20 years, with NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta.

Deputy Mayor Lieber will become a senior executive at Island Capital Group’s affiliated companies Anubis Advisors and C-III Capital Partners. Island Capital Group is a real estate merchant banking and asset management firm headquartered in New York City.

Deputy Mayor Lieber holds a BA from the University of Colorado and a Masters of Business Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.  He is Vice Chairman of the Zell-Lurie Real Estate Center at the Wharton School, and Trustee of the Urban Land Institute.


Stu Loeser/Andrew Brent   (212) 788-2958

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